Free Date Nights in Austin, April 24-30, 2018

Needing a day or night out without the kids? You’ve come to the right place. Here are the best FREE date ideas in Austin this week.

Tuesday, April 24

An American Conscience: The Reinhold Niebuhr Story (2017)
Tuesday, April 24 | from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. | Harry Ransom Center
An American Conscience: The Reinhold Niebuhr Story explores the life and influence of Niebuhr (1892–1971), a theologian, writer, political activist, and one of the most influential public intellectuals of the twentieth century. Presidents from Barack Obama to Jimmy Carter have credited his impact on their thinking, as did Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who cited Niebuhr in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” The screening will be followed by a discussion of Niebuhr’s ongoing relevance with filmmaker Martin Doblmeier. Free and open to the public. Please be aware that the Ransom Center’s Charles Nelson Prothro Theater seats 125. Line forms upon arrival of the first patron, and doors open 30 minutes in advance.

Wednesday, April 25

Musicale (Georgetown)
Wednesday, April 25 | from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. | Southwestern University, Sarofim Fine Arts Gallery, E. Rutersville Rd., Georgetown
The Sarofim School of Fine Arts’ Music Department is pleased to present the Southwestern University Percussion Ensemble in concert. Free and open to the public.

Nobel Laureate Kip Thorne at UT Austin
Wednesday, April 25 | at 7:30 p.m. | Hogg Memorial Auditorium, 300 Whitis Ave.
Attend a free public science talk featuring 2017 Nobel Prize Winner in Physics Kip Thorne, discussing his role in LIGO and the award-winning discovery of gravitational waves. Thorne will also pay tribute to the late UT Austin professor and physicist Dr. Cécile DeWitt-Morette in his talk.

Thursday, April 26

Dimension – UT Fashion Show
Thursday, April 26 | from 7 to 9:30 p.m. | Frank Erwin Center, 1701 Red River St.
29 senior apparel design students at the University of Texas at Austin will take cutting edge designs that blend fashion and science to the runway in a blockbuster annual show titled, Dimension. The annual show, organized by The University Fashion Group, will feature 140 original designs featuring garments inspired by abstract expressionism, exaggerated organic structures and circular fashion. Admission is free and open to the public.

KGSR Unplugged at the Grove Charlie Mars
Thursday, April 26 | from 8 to 9:30 p.m.| Shady Grove, 1624 Barton Springs Rd.
Join 93.3 KGSR in celebrating 25 YEARS of KGSR’s Unplugged at the Grove with free live music every Thursday evening at the iconic Shady Grove on Barton Springs Road! It’s 23 consecutive weeks of the best live music, food, and fun you’ll experience under the clear, warm skies of Austin, Texas, with absolutely no cover charge! All ages are welcome to attend.

Friday, April 27

19th Annual Red Poppy Festival (Georgetown)
Friday, April 27 | at 6 p.m. | Georgetown Square, 103 W. 7th St., Georgetown
Georgetown, Texas, the “Red Poppy Capital Of Texas,” will celebrate spring and its signature red poppies with the 19th Annual Red Poppy Festival April 27 through 29, in and around The Most Beautiful Town Square in Texas. The festivities will begin with a kickoff concert on Friday night featuring Dysfunkshun Junkshun followed on Saturday night by this year’s headlining act, Joe Nichols, whose ninth studio album, Never Gets Old, was released on July 2017, and whose recent single, “Baby Got Back” features Sir Mix A Lot.

10th Annual Little Artist Big Artist Benefit Show
Friday, April 27 | from 7 to 9 p.m. | Mondo Gallery, 4115 Guadalupe St.
Grounded in East Austin, Chula League, producers of Cherrywood Art Fair, and Mondo are partnering to present the 10th Annual Little Artist BIG ARTIST Benefit Show. The two day art showcase, hosted by Mondo, feature works of over 70 artists (Little and BIG) from Chula League’s arts-mentorship program, Little Artist BIG ARTIST. The opening reception is Friday, April 27, at 7 p.m. Celebrating 10 years of arts-mentorship, guests will dance to music, be merry with drinks and eat delicious bites during the reception. Attendees can bid on each of the 41 Little Artists pieces, starting at $50 each. The funds raised at this event go back to each of the six East Austin Elementary schools, keeping true to Chula League’s mission in fueling and sustaining the arts in East Austin.  Gallery hours on Saturday, April 28, are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Psalm 19 Astronomy Society
Friday, April 27 | from 8 to 11:45 p.m. | Pedestrian Bridge (part of the Austin Hike and Bike Trail going over Lady Bird Lake),  Intersection of S. Lamar Blvd. and W. Riverside Dr.
Psalm 19 Astronomy Society is an educational sidewalk astronomy ministry with the mission to share the beauty and majesty of God’s universe through astronomy. They seek to demonstrate that there can be harmony between God’s World, the universe, and God’s Word, the Bible.

Saturday, April 28

11th Annual Springfest At Hill Country Galleria (Bee Cave)
Saturday, April 28 | From 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. | Hill Country Galleria, 12700 Hill Country Blvd., Bee Cave
The Lake Travis Chamber of Commerce will bring SpringFest back to the Hill Country Galleria on Saturday. Presented by St. David’s Emergency Center, SpringFest will be a full-day community festival filled with shopping, food, music and fun for the whole family. SpringFest kicks off  with unique shopping vendors, a KidZone the size of a football field, kid’s performances and live music in the Central Plaza, a Boat Expo, and tasty craft beers and Texas wines in the BrewHaus and WineStomp.

Movies & Meaning: THE FOUNTAIN Panel Discussion
Saturday, April 28 | from 7:30 to 11 p.m. | The Community Cinema at Community First! Village, 9301 Hog Eye Rd.
Mobile Loaves & Fishes invites you to a free movie night at our Community First! Village.
Grab chairs and a blanket, bring family and friends, and enjoy this special screening of The Fountain (2006) and a panel discussion afterwards centered around themes of death, resurrection, reincarnation, and eternal life as explored in both the film and in multiple faith traditions. Hot dogs, milkshakes, popcorn, candy and drinks will be available for purchase (cash preferred). The event is free, however a $5 donation would be highly appreciated.

Marvel at the Moon (Lockhart)
Saturday, April 28 | from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. | Lockhart State Park, 2012 State Park Rd., Lockhart
Discover the stories and science behind our largest satellite – the Moon! Peer through binoculars and a telescope at the surface of the moon, learn how its craters formed, and hear ancient stories. Meet on the #1 fairway and park along the road and walk to the site along the golf cart path at the bottom of the hill. A few pairs of binoculars may be available, but bring your own if possible.  Please bring flashlights, but try to use them as little as possible near the meeting site.

Sunday, April 29

Austin Short Short Fiction Festival
Sunday, April 29 | from 12 to 3 p.m. | Elisabet Ney Museum, 304 E. 44th St.
Hosted by the Elisabet Ney Museum and The New Writers Project at UT Austin, the Short Short Fiction Festival is happening on Sunday. Join fifteen or more local authors as they read their best short short fiction piece (<1000 words) aloud at the Ney in this event! They also hope to have a couple of non-local nationally-known surprise readers. Accomplished wordsmiths Elizabeth McCracken, Deb Olin Unferth, and Mary Helen Specht once again curate the readings and host the day’s events. Booths from local publishers will also be present. Admission is free.

Birds Barbershop and Independence Brewery Present “WEST FEST”
Sunday, April 29 | from 2 to 5 p.m. | Birds Barbershop, 1902 S Congress Ave
On Sunday, Birds Barbershop and Independence Brewing Co. will be hosting “West Fest,” an all-ages, after-brunch party in its Congress parking lot celebrating all things cowboy. In the spirit of the occasion, attendees 21 can sip complimentary Cowboys From Helles – a new seasonal Munich Style Lager from Independence – while everyone can enjoy the Dolly Parton-themed drag show, professional lasso demo and competition, and vinyl DJ country tunes. Birds will be on-site offering free Dolly ‘Dos and Willy Braids, while guests can browse the western-themed art market, play carnival games, munch on funnel cakes, sip Rambler sparkling water, pose in the cowboy photo booth and more. Guests who arrive in full cowboy attire will get access to the VIP area. Seriously.

Monday, April 30

Capitol Rotunda Community Sing
Monday, April 30 | from 7 to 9 p.m. | Texas State Capitol Rotunda, 1100 S. Congress Ave.
M
eet in the rotunda of the Texas State Capitol to sing wholeheartedly in the oral tradition of community singing. Simple yet powerful songs are taught call-and-response, creating an open and welcoming environment for all, regardless of singing experience or background. Gifts of the monetary persuasion are graciously accepted to help support our mutual flourishing but are by no means required. Your presence is the greatest gift at all.

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About the Author

Dani Dudek
Dani Dudek is an Emmy-winning marketer who has been active professionally in the entertainment industry for two decades. She has mastered the art of celebrity spotting across the country, but does so best in Austin, where she runs the website ATXGossip.com. With a special eye for even the most minor of celebs, she is basically Shazam and IMDB together in human form.
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